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Un-Bach’in’ It


October 2013

Mrs. Bgddy called me Saturday morning and gave everything she had into getting me to drive up to her mom’s house.  I went on a guilt trip and even had her resort to pleading… I won’t lie, it was raining out and I seriously wanted to take advantage of laying about the house.  On the other hand I really missed her and after a few “pleases”…  I told a bit of a mis-truth and said I couldn’t see driving 2 hours to get up there just to have a nice dinner and drive home another two hours so I could get my ride in and make it to bowling Sunday afternoon.

After finishing the conversation and hanging up I got to thinking that my decision to stay home would be far less enjoyable than heading up – and if I was worried about timing I could bring my bike, stay the night and ride Sunday morning…  That would work, then I could head home and just go straight to bowling.  Perfect.

I quickly threw my cycling gear together, packed a change of clothes, my shoes and helmet, my lights (just in case I had to ride early), dropped everything in the car and then got my bike.  When I got that in I was struck by the notion, because Mrs. Bgddy complained about not being able get her run in due to the weather, that I could pack her bike too and we could go out for an adventure together.  That would make perfect even better.  I packed a pair of cycling shorts, tights, arm warmers, a jersey, her helmet and shoes into a gym bag and wedged her bike in (with a couple of blankets between) in the trunk of my Escape.

Two hours later, after my wife had told my girls that I was staying home, I pulled up to the warmest reception I’ve gotten in quite a while – and my wife and kids are known for some fine receptions, even for something as simple as coming home from the office.  There was a veritable parade of people who came out – my daughter’s first, then my wife, then her sisters kids…  My word, the hugs [and one kiss – 😉 ] alone were worth the drive!

The trick, heading up north without my wife knowing that I was on my way, was that by the time I’d gotten half-way there the rain had turned into clouds mixed with sun and I was passing by one of my favorite cycling destinations:  The Pere-Marquette Rail Trail.  I’d written, a while back, about possibly having some over-training issues so I had a serious struggle going between stopping for a quick 20 before finishing my journey or just heading straight through.  In the end, heading straight through won out – I wanted to get to my in-law’s house and adding an extra ride while trying to take it easy for a few days just didn’t make sense.

So yesterday morning, after breakfast and my wife’s amazement at how much weight she’s lost over the last couple of months (her cycling clothes are starting to loosen up), we headed down to the state park where we started out.  Right or wrong I was a little ambiguous about how tough this ride was going to be when my wife noticed that the first several miles were downhill.  She was worried about the ride back and having enough gas…  While she’s more than competent on a bike and she has been riding with me in the mountains (on the smaller hills), she’s never been on anything like what we were going to experience on this ride – 1,400 feet of elevation gain and another 1,400 feet of descent over 20 miles – we even hit a 10% hill…  This was a lot of climbing for her but she handled it like a champ after I explained some of the finer points of maintaining control for the length of each hill – a lot tougher than anything she saw down in Georgia and almost double the length she was used to riding.

I lost out on my opportunity to sit around and be useless but the weekend turned out to be a lot better for it.



  1. vardotrichic says:

    Good decision and awesome work to Mrs. Bgddy!! 🙂

  2. Sandra says:

    You are a lucky man. . . and kudos to her for the awesome ride!

  3. Unplanned trip tend to be the best trips, especially if there is a bit of a surprise element to it.

  4. BikeWar says:

    Two comments – nice saddle/bar drop! But yikes, drive side pic please! At least it’s on the big ring. 🙂

    • bgddyjim says:

      Didn’t want to get the bike dirty which necessitated leaning the bar against the car above the dirt – I figured ’cause it was technically a photo of my wife, I’d get a pass on the drive side. I thought about it just before I took the photo, but it’s my wife… Can’t say, “hold that pose so I can switch the direction my steed is facing”!

  5. […] egregious photography errors – in fact, he (I’m assuming the proprietor is a he) even caught me for this […]

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